Research by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, in Laurel, for the Missile Defense Agency Ground Sensors Directorate recently culminated in Lockheed Martin building and installing the multi-mission Long Range Discrimination Radar at Clear Space Force Station, Alaska.

LRDR is a multi-mission, multi-face radar capable of conducting integrated missile defense and space domain awareness (SDA) missions through a wide field of view. It tracks and discriminates against multiple threats simultaneously, providing precision track, discrimination and hit assessment data to the Missile Defense System (MDS) firing units such as the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) System. 

It combines the strengths of lower-frequency radars that excel at searching large volumes of space with higher-frequency radars that excel at determining which of the multiple objects are threats.

“This ballistic missile defense technology will help keep the U.S. and our allies safe from many rogue states that possess and threaten to use such weapons,” said Gerry Ricciardi, APL LRDR hardware technology readiness assessment panel team lead.